Greater value

Over the last four years I have witnessed, as have you, the increasing polarization in the United States. No matter who the ultimate winners of the current election are, I doubt that the polarization is going to subside much, if at all. Despite that polarization, I don’t experience it at all in my interactions with people in our Goldendale community. I know I am not on the same political spectrum as many of the folks I interact with, joke with, do business with. What a welcome relief our real-life interaction is when compared to the political infighting. I wish to say thank you to a community that recognizes that human kindness, decency, and hospitality are more valued than a political belief.

Ken Margraf

Goldendale

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What we've learned

If the 2020 election taught us anything, it is that our voting system is badly broken and in need of a major overhaul. Millions of Americans believe that the election was rife with all manner of error, fraud, and malfeasance, and there are people saying there’s a growing mountain of evidence to support such claims. While there is little doubt that cheating occurs in every modern-day election, I think it can be safely said that 2020 takes the cake. At the very least, we can say with certainty, “What a mess.”

Regardless of which side of the political aisle you stand on, we should all be able to agree that America cannot stand if our elections cannot be trusted. If Americans cannot be confident that all legal votes—and only legal votes—will be counted and reported accurately and honestly, then America will become yet another banana republic filled with violence, oppression, and hopelessness.

What can we do? For starters, we can allow the legal processes to work, unhindered. Despite the adamant declarations of mainstream media, neither candidate has won the presidency yet. Most states have not certified their election results and will not do so until the courts have ruled on the numerous lawsuits filed by the President, various groups, and individuals. Some state legislatures have ordered manual audits and re-counts due to gross errors committed by election software. Hundreds of thousands of votes are in question due to alleged mail-in-vote-dumping after Election Day, dead people voting, people voting multiple times in more than one state, stolen ballots, and the like. The Electoral College does not vote until Dec. 14. This election is not over; we must be patient.

Lawsuits follow most elections. It is the right of candidates to challenge election results. Both Republicans and Democrats file lawsuits. When they do, it is up to the courts to sort it out.

Wouldn’t it be great if the voting process was tamper-proof and we could trust election results? It will never be perfect, but we can do a lot better than this. We used to do a lot better than this. Sometimes the old ways work best.

Cheri Harris

Goldendale